A recent tour by journalists at the Delta Corporation Lagers plant in Southerton revealed that there will be shortages of soft drinks during this festive season, but there will be enough alcohol to meet the demand.
This is due to the fact that they do not have enough foreign currency to purchase raw materials required in the manufacturing of beverages.
By Concilia Muyendesi and Spanyoge Madziwa.
Lagers division general manager Mr Munyaradzi Nyandoroh said the beer unit is not affected much by the prevailing economic situation since most of the raw materials are sourced locally.
“Maize and barley are produced by local farmers though we have challenges importing other ingredients and packaging materials such as glass which demand foreign currency.” He said.
Mr Nyandoroh said the bottling line sourced from Germany is operating at full throttle so the nation should not panicking fear of beer shortages as evidenced by other sections of social media which have been circulating rumours that Delta Beverages is running short of alcohol.
Since the festive season is the busiest and most celebrated month on the calendar, serious concerns were raised on the view that soft drinks prices have gone up. However Delta revealed that they have not changed their pricing strategy since 2013. Delta Corporation CEO Mr Pearson Gowero said some rogue retailers are selling soft drinks for a dollar yet the recommended Delta price is $0.50.
“There are wholesalers and retailers that are adding excessive markup upon selling the beverages above the recommended price which is resulting in people panic buying.”said Gowero.
Mr Gowero commended governments efforts as they are receiving some foreign currency from the central bank to assist them import ingredients and other raw materials.
“From the soft drinks stocks that we have it shows that it will cover for one and a half weeks but hopefully there are signs that we might be able to have more stocks depending on foreign currency to be received from the Central Bank.” he said.
The closing down of ZimGlass company which manufactured bottles has severely affected the company as it now relies on imported bottles.
The Delta plant produces 320 million litres of beer annually.